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January 18 @ 7:00 am - 11:30 pm


The National Capital Territory of Delhi (NCT of Delhi) holds a unique position as the seat of both the central government and the government of Delhi.

This distinctive status necessitates special provisions to facilitate cooperation between the elected Delhi government and the central government.

The Lieutenant Governor (LG) serves as the constitutional head of NCT of Delhi, representing the President of India in the territory.  

However, conflicts over the distribution of powers, particularly in the administration, have been a persistent constitutional and political issue.

Ongoing Tussle in NCT of Delhi:

Notification of 2015:

  • The central government’s 2015 Notification added Entry 41, granting the LG authority in matters related to services, public order, police, and land.
  • The Supreme Court invalidated this notification, emphasizing the elected Delhi government’s legislative and executive powers over administrative services, excluding public order, police, and land matters.

Government of NCT of Delhi (Amendment) Act, 2023:

  • The Central Government responded with an ordinance and later an Act, establishing the National Capital Civil Service Authority (NCCSA) and granting overriding powers to the Centre.
  • The Act allows the LG to have the final say in matters related to services, undermining the elected government’s control.

Extension of Chief Secretary’s Tenure:

  • The recent conflict involves the central government’s exercise of power in extending the Chief Secretary’s tenure without the elected government’s recommendation.
  • This move raises concerns about the violation of the triple chain of accountability, undermining the principles of representative democracy.

Issues with Government of NCT of Delhi Act, 2023:

Undermining Democracy:

  • The Act undermines representative democracy by diminishing the elected government’s control over services.
  • The NCCSA, headed by the Chief Minister, Chief Secretary, and Principal Secretary, empowers bureaucrats over elected representatives.

Constitutional Violation:

  • The Act violates the SC’s judgment, nullifying the Delhi government’s legislative and executive powers.
  • It contradicts Article 239AA, disrupting the harmonious relationship envisioned between the Centre and Delhi government.

Concerns in Recent Supreme Court Judgment:

  • The Court’s recent judgment on the Chief Secretary’s tenure extension deviates from constitutional logic and contradicts past decisions.
  • Selective application of rules, conflict of interest allegations, and evasion of established precedents raise concerns about the legitimacy of the extension.

Way Forward:

Expert Committee Formation:

  • Forming an expert committee with legal, constitutional, and administrative experts to provide unbiased recommendations.
  • The committee should thoroughly analyze legal aspects, review precedents, and propose practical solutions respecting democratic principles.

Dialogue and Negotiation:

  • Facilitating meaningful dialogue and negotiation between the central and Delhi governments.
  • Both parties should engage in constructive discussions to address concerns and find a mutually agreeable solution.

Respect for Constitutional Principles:

  • All stakeholders should demonstrate a commitment to upholding constitutional principles throughout the resolution process.
  • Respecting democratic governance, separation of powers, and the rights of elected representatives is crucial.


The ongoing tussle over the administration of NCT of Delhi highlights the need for a balanced approach that respects constitutional principles.  

The recent Supreme Court judgment and the Government of NCT of Delhi Act, 2023, raise significant concerns about democratic governance.  

A way forward involves forming an expert committee, engaging in dialogue, and upholding constitutional principles to ensure a fair and transparent resolution of the issue.  

This approach will be crucial in maintaining the delicate balance of powers between the elected government and the central government in the national capital.

Mains Question:

  1. Examine the constitutional complexities associated with the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Act, 2023, and analyse its impact on the dynamic between the elected government of Delhi and the central government. (150 WORDS).


January 18
7:00 am - 11:30 pm
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